For the first time in Florida history, a Governor's budget signing ceremony was deemed a "private" event. Even though the 70 billion dollar budget effects the lives of every single Floridian, and even though it was held outdoors in a public town square by a retirement community..
As usual, the most unpopular governor in the country wanted a friendly audience. So he addressed a teabag crowd at the "Villages", the ultra-conservative right-wing mecca of our state. He thought he was gauranteed a friendly audience.
He thought wrong.
Even in this conservative bastion, there were plenty of protestors. In his speech, he touted cuts to $615 million that he called "wasteful" and "frivolous" spending, which included programs for homeless veterans, public radio, cancer research, aid for disabled children, meals for needy seniors, and other "frivolous" spending.
Many of the seniors were upset with the $187.5 million cut in "wasteful" nursing home care, others were upset about that their children and grandchildren were getting kicked in the gut while the Teabag legislature revived slushfunds, bloated their highly-paid staffs, had million-dollar giveaways and payback for their cronies, and still somehow found 20 million dollars to FIGHT the Fair District amendments that passed with 63% of the vote.
Gov. Rick Scott was clearly startled, and the Sumter County Sheriff's Office was oredered to "keep Democrats out" and to literally look for "liberal-looking" seniors. By "liberal-looking", I guess they meant pins, buttons, and disingenious t-shirts that said something rabble-rousing like "I Like Teachers" or "We Care About Our Veterans". More than a dozen were removed.
This was not only immoral. It was illegal.
1. If this was a "private event"... TAXPAYER MONEY was used. The RNC didn't stage this. It was paid for completely by the taxpayers. They had no right. They should be sued.
2. Florida's budget signing has never been, nor should it be, a "private event". It effects all of us, and hurts most of us in this case. The least we can expect is for this cowardly governor to feebily attempt to justify it to our face.
3. This was outdoors in a public town square. Nuff said.
Here is a YouTube video of the Sumter County deputies pulling the trouble-making seniors away from the signing:
As sick as that was, that was just scandal numero uno that day.
The newspapers that covered the event showed the same pictures of Rick Scott being surrounded by screaming, uniformed children... many holding signs displaying their "affection" for Rick Scott.
Creepy pictures LIKE THIS ONE and THIS ONE.
I immediately knew something was off. Why would kids be crowding a Golem-looking freak like Rick Scott like he was Justin Beiber? Especially one who just fired their teachers??
This is the guy who tried to cut $3 BILLION in education, but still succeeded in the largest cut in our state history ($1.35 billion)
(And to add insult to injury, the SOB actually had the GALL to speak under a massive banner that read LESS WASTE - MORE FOR EDUCATION.)
Well, turns out the screaming kids weren't public school kids. Gov. Golem has NEVER visited a public school, and never will. Public schools, by the way, have policies against attending political events.
They were from two taxpayer-funded charter schools. (Scott wants charter schools to replace public schools.) But not just any charter schools. NO, the nearby Villages charter schools DID NOT ALLOW their children to attend Scott's "Spit on a Teacher, Kick a Disabled Kid" TEABAGGER Rally.
No, as usual,
something was up:
As it turns out, the kids were from the P.M. Wells and Four Corners charter schools in Osceola County. Both are run by Charter Schools USA, a large charter management firm whose CEO, Jonathan Hage, served on Gov. Scott’s education transition team when Scott took office in January. Scott is a big fan of charter schools and routinely pulls them in for photo opps, although it is uncertain whether as Governor he has ever visited a traditional public school. If he has, the media has not been made aware.
The kids were bused over 60 MILES back AND forth to attend this event.
Charter Schools USA had their "public relations consultant", Colleen Reynolds, defend the trip. (Our public school has to beg for essential funds, but charter schools run by Rick Scott buddies get enough taxpayer money to hire F&**ing public relations personnel!)
Mz. Reynolds said school funds were used, not taxpayer money, to bus the kids in...which is COMPLETE AND UTTER BS since the school funds ARE THE SAME AS TAXPAYER MONEY!! In fact, those two schools receive MILLIONS in taxpayer funding!
Mz. Reynolds also had the audacity to say it was a valuable field trip to teach kids about the democratic process.
So if my kid went to that school, he or she would learn that the democratic process means passing a budget that ruins the lives of the millions of citizens and then keeping out any possible dissenters by force.... not to mention being told to hold up pre-made propoganda signs bemoaning "earmarks" for the less fortunate.
Nice lesson, jerks.